Each other’s light: A multicultural celebration “Go Everywhere” seminars and entertainment

Seminar Schedule

1:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 26

  • It’s all about Bienvenido and intercultural leadership: Relationships, responsiveness and resilience – Gilberto Perez, Sanctuary, Hesston Mennonite Church
  • Each other’s light: Muslim and Christian Encounters – Evie and Wally Shellenberger, Community Center, Hesston Mennonite Church

2:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 26

  • Prediction Before Prescription: The Use of Advanced Data Analytics for Better Care at Lower Cost – Gergens Jean Polynice, Sanctuary, Hesston Mennonite Church
  • The Mestiza Chronicles – Lisa Guedea ’81 Carreño, Community Center, Hesston Mennonite Church

3:30 p.m., Friday, September 26

  • Reception for Seminar attendees, including presentation by Hesston College Multicultural Student Scholars. Sponsor: faculty member Marissa King, foyer, Hesston Mennonite Church

4 p.m., Friday, September 26

  • Half or double? My journey as a bicultural-biracial person – Ken G Kabira ’81, Community Center, Hesston Mennonite Church

10 a.m., Saturday, September 27

  • KEYNOTE – Working as a Cultural and Communication Bridge in Iraq between U.S. and Iraqi Leaders – Sadi Othman, speaker, and Dave Osborne, moderator, Sanctuary, Hesston Mennonite Church

11:15 a.m., Saturday, September 27

  • Book signing – 40 Years of Service – H. Dwight Swartzendruber Ac46, ’49, foyer, Hesston Mennonite Church

Seminar Presenters

Lisa Guedea ’81 Carreño
The Mestiza Chronicles – Friday, 2:30 p.m., Community Center, Hesston Mennonite Church
Lisa Guedea CarrenoGuedea Carreño reflects her journey from inner city to rural barrio and beyond and shares how her time at Hesston helped broaden her thinking about culture and also set her on an unexpected and fulfilling career path.
     Lisa Guedea Carreño is director of Elkhart Public Library in Elkhart, Ind. Her professional experience includes positions in corporate and law firm libraries and most recently as director of the Harold and Wilma Good Library of Goshen College from 2000 through July 2014. Her cultural and civic pursuits include leading three study-service terms in Nicaragua; making music in a wide variety of styles and ensembles; hosting a weekly radio show on 91.1 The Globe WGCS; and volunteering with local community service organizations. Born in Chicago, Guedea Carreño spent her early childhood on the near west side of Denver, where her parents were active in the “Chicano Power” movement of the 1960s. At the age of 10 she moved with her family to a barrio outside of Alice, Texas, where her father was called to pastor a small bilingual Mennonite church. Guedea Carreño’s personal philosophy of librarianship – that libraries are about ideas, information and inspiration, all of which involve people – has been shaped by her experiences in these diverse venues.
     Guedea Carreño graduated from Hesston College in 1981, received her B.A. in music performance (voice) from Goshen College, and earned an M.S. in library and information science at Simmons College (Boston). She is a member of Iglesia Menonita del Buen Pastor and lives near Goshen, Ind., with her husband Sonny and their daughter Geneviéve.
Ken G Kabira ’81
Half or double? My journey as a bicultural-biracial person – Friday, 4 p.m., Community Center, Hesston Mennonite Church
Ken G KabiraBorn in Japan to a Japanese father and an American mother, Ken G Kabira grew up as a biracial, bicultural and bilingual person. He will share his journey from youth to an executive in some of the best known organizations and how his understanding of his own being has evolved.
     Kabira graduated from Hesston College in 1981 with an A.A. in liberal arts. He serves as the managing principal of TrueWorks, a management consultancy based in Naperville, Ill. Born to a Japanese father and an American mother, he spent the first nineteen years of his life in Japan. Mr. Kabira’s first work experience was as a nurse’s aid at a psychiatric hospital in Newton, Kan. After spending his initial years in business at Inland Steel in Chicago, he became a brand manager at the Kellogg Company in 1994. Since then he has held progressively larger roles managing world-class brands. He is one of the few marketers who has served as a chief marketing officer in all three sectors of the economy: for-profit (McDonald’s Japan), nonprofit (National-Louis University, Lions Clubs International) and the public (Chicago Transit Authority). He is passionate about bicycle racing and soccer, and is a member of Lombard (Ill.) Mennonite Church. He also graduated from The University of Chicago with a B.A. in behavioral sciences in 1985 and an M.B.A. in 1992.
Sadi Othman ’93 – keynote speaker
Reflections – cultural and communication bridges in Iraq between U.S. and Iraqi leaders – Saturday, 10 a.m., Sanctuary, Hesston Mennonite Church
Hired by the U.S. government as a linguistic/cultural adviser for General David Petraeus, Sadi Othman then became a senior adviser, facilitating communication between Iraqi leadership and U.S. political/military leadership in Iraq. A Palestinian American, Sadi is now vice president of North America Western Asia Holdings, an investment firm in the Middle East, Central Asia and North Africa.

Gilberto Perez, Jr. ’92
It’s all about Bienvenido and intercultural leadership: relationships, responsiveness and resilience – Friday, 1:30 p.m., Sanctuary, Hesston Mennonite Church
For the last two years Gilberto Pérez, Jr., has served as associate professor of social work at Goshen (Ind.) College. He joined the Center for Intercultural and International Education team in June 2014. Prior to coming to Goshen College, Gilberto was employed at Northeastern Center, a community mental health center in Northeast Indiana. Here he worked on authoring the Bienvenido curriculum, a nationally recognized mental health promotion curriculum for Latino immigrants that addresses access to mental health services and increased sense of belonging for Latinos in their respective communities. The curriculum has been implemented in 13 cities in Indiana and is available in 14 states across the United States. Gilberto has also served as peace evangelist for the Mennonite Church and recently completed regional pastor responsibilities with Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference. Gilberto has offered presentations on mental health and community development at various national and international conferences. He serves on the Plan Commission, City of Goshen, is on the Board of Directors at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, and serves on the Elkhart County Reentry Initiative and Elkhart County Community Corrections Advisory Board.
     Gilberto obtained his undergraduate social work degree from Eastern Mennonite University (Harrisonburg, Va.), a graduate certificate in conflict transformation from Eastern Mennonite, and a master of social work from the Universidad Interamericana in San Juan, P.R. He graduated from Hesston College in 1992. He is a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers. His social work experiences include hospice social work, emergency social services 911 and community mental health. Gilberto lives in Goshen, Ind., with his wife and three children.
Jean Polynice ’93
Prediction Before Prescription: The Use of Advanced Data Analytics for Better Care at Lower Cost – Friday, 2:30 p.m., Sanctuary, Hesston Mennonite Church
Gergens Jean PolyniceDisruptive technology is now a welcome fact in conducting business in many industries, including healthcare. The need to provide better care at lower cost accelerates the rate of change, the supply of information and the level of predictive analytics adoption in the industry.
     How best to use the power of big data, stream computing, data management, machine learning and visual discovery to deliver advanced predictive data analytics solutions for medical research, healthcare operations management and health insurance in order to drive better care at lower costs? Dr. Polynice will speak of his current work at Emory University Critical Care Center and Northwestern University Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago Intensive Care to support the application of real-time physiological and operational data analytics.
     Gergens Jean Polynice, Ph.D., is a native of Haiti. He is CEO of CléMetric, which is a software company that provides real-time predictive data analytics solutions for medical research and healthcare operations management. Dr. Polynice specializes in uncovering valuable insights from quantitative and qualitative data to tackle key challenges. He also runs a water purification and ice-making plan in Haiti where he employs 60 full-time employees and 30 part-time employees.
     Prior to founding CléMetric, Dr. Polynice worked for Ernst & Young and Ariba Technologies, among other companies, in implementing large-scale IT projects. Polynice holds M.S. and M.A. degrees and received his doctorate degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is a visiting scholar and research fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Evie and Wally Shellenberger
Each other’s light: Muslim and Christian Encounters – Friday, 1:30 p.m., Community Center, Hesston Mennonite Church
During their four years of living in Iran and sharing their lives with the Iranian people, Evie and Wally encountered and experienced God many times and in many ways as they describe in their new book, Welcome to Iran! Christian Encounters with Shia Muslims. Through stories and poetry this seminar will reveal the light and joy of their encounters with Iranian Muslims.
     Wally and Evie Shellenberger have had the opportunity to live in a number of multicultural settings including Nigeria/Biafra, Haiti and Iran. They are retired in Paoli, Ind., where they worked with other health care professionals in developing health care resources for several counties in Southern Indiana.

Performers/Entertainment Stage

Fjaere Harder Nussbaum ’05
Fjaere Harder NussbaumFjaere is a native of Mt. Lake, Minnesota. In 2008, she graduated from Goshen College with a B.A. in vocal performance. Since then she has pursued professional musical theatre, performing and living in New York City, Boston, Indiana and Maine. Recently, she toured for two months with the National Theatre for Children throughout Wisconsin Elementary schools and was most recently seen performing at Fanny Hill Theatre in Eau Claire, Wis., where she resides with her husband. She is starting a master’s of social work program this fall through the University of Wisconsin. In her free time, Fjaere loves spending time in nature, especially in her flower, vegetable and herb garden.
La República Rock Latino, Chicago, Ill.
La RepublicaGenres: Latin/rock, pop, Latin. Label: Cafe Productions. Members: Daniel Moya – bass, guitar and vocals; Juan Moya – bass, guitar and vocals; David Guevara – auxilary percussion, drum kit, vocals
     La República has been forming from Armenia, Colombia, where Daniel Moya and Juan Moya were born and raised. Colombia is a place with an internal armed conflict and displacement that has been going for more than 50 years. The Moya brothers began to play music through the Quito Mennonite Church, Ecuador, where their father, César Moya, instructed them with acoustic and traditional instruments such as the guitar and the bombo. The brothers have been playing music since they were very young and this is why the music that inspires them has the foundation of traditional Colombian and Latin American music. In the year 2010 La República officially began to play as a Latin rock group. During the process of these two years the band members have been changing which has transformed the sound of the Moya brothers. In the year 2011 the Moya brothers contacted the percussionist David Guevara who has musical experience with groups that are now recognized world-wide. Guevara has brought a particular rhythm with his percussion. Guevara´s family also comes from the same region in Colombia as the Moya brothers. At beginnings of 2012 a new musical trio is formed. The inspiration that has impacted the music of La República have been artists such as Juanes, Carlos Vives, Café Tacvba, Caifanes, Adanowsky, Pink Floyd, Radiohead, Los Bunkers, Los Tres and of course the group with the most influence on La República – The Beatles.
Tom Unruh ’93
Tom UnruhTom Unruh and Jammin Biscuits have performed at the Kansas State Fair, the Kansas Bluegrass Association Winterfest and the Claremore, Okla., Bluegrass and Chili Festival as well as at various city festivals, for private business banquets, churches, weddings and other events. They specialize in traditional bluegrass and gospel/bluegrass, with distinctive four-part harmony and a variety of instruments.
Herm Weaver ’79
Herm Weaver is the Conference Minister for the Mountains States Mennonite Conference. Prior work includes 13 years at Eastern Mennonite University as associate professor and chair of the Department of Psychology. He continues to be involved in teaching and training events. In addition, he is a singer/songwriter who has been telling stories with his music to a wide range of audiences around the world for decades.
     Herm holds an A.A. from Hesston College, a B.S. from Eastern Mennonite University, an M.S.Ed. from The University of Akron and a Ph.D. from The Union Institute and University. Herm and Cindy, his wife of 32 years, have three children, Hope, Chloe and Dillon.
Aaron Young ’12/AY MusiK
Aaron Young/AY MusiKThe X Factor contestant and MTV MADE. Pioneer of the #BatteryTour innovating live performance across the world.
     In 2013 AY MusiK innovated modern day performing in the college market forever by offering colleges the #TheAYexperience, a live show that uses no electricity. AY uses his own power system for optimum mobility and freedom. No plugs, no wires. Led by AY (New age Hip Hop) and lead singer Hailey Canalas (pop/country vocal) AY MusiK is a unique blend of current musical genres.